Full Title:Soil Science and Land Management
Module Code:SCIA S7001
Credits: 5
Valid From:Semester 1 - 2013/14 ( September 2013 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Description:In this module, students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of the various soil types and factors that interact to effect soil chemistry, biology and physical composition and associated effects on nutrient management and other management regimes. This module offers a combination of interactive lectures, practical classes and field-trips that cater for a wide range of cognitive abilities.
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to
  1. Compare, contrast and evaluate the fundamental principles of soil science, including soil genesis, classification and land use.
  2. Describe and relate aspects of soil biology, chemistry, physicals and biochemistry to soil structure and fertility, with particular emphasis on varying soil management regimes.
  3. Demonstrate an appreciation of the fundamental factors that affect soil hydrology, nutrient storage and the movement of nutrients through a soil profile.
  4. Develop a nutrient management programme for selected farms adhering to relevent legislation.
  5. Perform laboratory and field analyses of various analytical methods specific to soil science applications and to critically analyse and appraise laboratory results.

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Earth system components
Pedology and hydrology as part of atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and lithosphere systems. Major energy, moisture, carbon, sulphur cycling systems, residence times of soil, surface and ground waters.
Soil classification
Soil genesis, geology and geomorphology; Soil taxonomy and land use.
Soil physics
Soil water and hydrology; Aggregate and micro-aggregate stability; Soil mineralogy; geophysical surveys.
Soil chemistry
Soil fertility and soil productivity; Soil as a medium for plant growth; Soil organic matter; Plant-soil macronutrient relations; Micronutrient and toxic elements; Soil fertility evaluation and fertiliser use; Soil surveys and nutrient management planning.
Soil biology
Soil ecology and biodiversity; Micro-organism (bacteria/fungi) – plant relationship. Microbial degradation of soil organic matter pools and CO2 sequestration.
Soil management
Effects of farming operations on soils and plant growth; Soil conservation and erosion; Soil contamination, remediation, geophysical and remote sensing techniques; Soil and groundwater contaminant tracers; Land and the word food supply; Soil related policy and legislation. Development of an environment protection plan.
• Determination of soil texture, particle density, bulk density, aggregate stability and porosity. Examination of residual soil parent materials. • Determination of soil pH, lime requirement, conductivity, available nutrients, selected micro-nutrients, mineral matter and organic carbon. • Determination of soil microbial activity and identification of soil macro-organisms. • Analytical analysis of selected crops.
Field trips
Soils and land use; Soil sampling, analysis and devise an environment/ nutrient management plan.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work50.00%
End of Module Formal Examination50.00%

Full Time

Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Project Creation of a nutrient management programme for selected farms adhering to relevent legislation. 4 20.00 0 0 Week 10 0
Practical/Skills Evaluation Laboratory attendance, performance of laboratory skills and successful write up of laboratory report. 1,2,3,5 30.00 0 0 Every Week 0
No Project
No Practical
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Formal Exam End-of-Semester Final Examination 1,2,3,4 50.00 0 0 End-of-Semester 0
Reassessment Requirement
A repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload & Resources

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture No Description 2.00 Every Week 2.00
Practical No Description 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Directed Reading No Description 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Independent Study No Description 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 9.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 5.00
This course has no Part Time workload.
Recommended Book Resources
  • Manoj K. Shukla. 2011, Soil hydrology, land use and agriculture: measurement and modelling, Cambridge, Mass [ISBN: 9781845937973]
  • David L. Rowell. 1994, Soil science : methods and applications [ISBN: 0582087848]
  • P.C. Bandyopadhyay 2007, Soil analysis, New Delhi : Gene-Tech Books [ISBN: 9788189729691]
  • Keith A. Smith, Chris E. Mullins. 2001, Soil and environmental analysis: physical methods, New York : M. Dekker [ISBN: 0824704142]
  • Bujang B.K. Huat, Arun Prasad, Afshin Asadi, Sina Kazemian 2013, Geotechnics of Organic Soils and Peat, CRC Press [ISBN: 978-0415659413]
Recommended Article/Paper Resources
  • A.R. Dexter, G. Richard, D. Arrouays, E.A. Czyż, C. Jolivet , O. Duval 2008, Complexed organic matter controls soil physical properties, Geoderma, 144, 620–627
  • Vincent de Paul Obade and Rattan Lal 2013, Assessing land cover and soil quality by remote sensing and geographical information systems (GIS), Catena, 104, 77–92
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
DK_SAGRI_7 Bachelor of Science in Agriculture 1 Elective